Israel and Palestine Director, Human Rights Watch
Omar Shakir serves as the Israel and Palestine Director at Human Rights Watch, where he investigates human rights abuses in Israel, the West Bank, and Gaza and has authored several major reports, including a 2021 report comprehensively documenting how Israeli authorities are committing the crimes against humanity of apartheid and persecution against millions of Palestinians. As a result of his advocacy, the Israeli government deported Omar in November 2019. Prior to his current role, he was a Bertha Fellow at the Center for Constitutional Rights, where he focused on US counterterrorism policies, including legal representation of Guantanamo detainees. As the 2013-14 Arthur R. and Barbara D. Finberg Fellow at Human Rights Watch, he investigated human rights violations in Egypt, including the Rab’a massacre, one of the largest killings of protesters in a single day. A former Fulbright Scholar in Syria, Omar holds a JD from Stanford Law School, where he co-authored a report on the civilian consequences of US drone strikes in Pakistan as a part of the International Human Rights & Conflict Resolution Clinic, an MA in Arab Studies from Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Affairs, and a BA in International Relations from Stanford.